June 5, 2018 / 7:35 AM / 10 months ago

EU's Juncker says Italy is at the heart of Europe, deserves respect

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker delivers a speech during a debate on the Future of Europe at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, May 30, 2018. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The president of the European Commission said on Tuesday that Italy is a pillar of the European Union and that the country deserves respect.

“Italy yesterday as today deserves respect and trust,” Jean-Claude Juncker told an economic conference in Brussels. He added that “Italy’s place is at the heart of Europe.”

The remark comes after rows between the newly formed anti-establishment Italian government and EU commissioners.

Reporting by Jan Strupczewski and Francesco Guarascio; editing by Robert-Jan Bartunek

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